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Fact Check: News outlets incorrectly attribute Karamba Diaby as the “First African-born MP to enter Germany’s parliament.”

Last week, Karamba Diaby, the first Black African-born Member of Germany’s parliament announced he was stepping down and would not seek re-election in order to spend more time with his family. He also raised the issue of racism, discrimination, and attacks he had faced as an MP.

Karamba Diaby, a member of the Social Democratic Party, was born in Senegal and has been a member of the Bundestag since the 2013 elections. He has a Ph.D in Chemistry which he obtained when he moved to East Germany in the 1980s for his advanced studies. 

Many prominent news outlets incorrectly attributed him as the “first African-born MP to enter Germany’s parliament”. This phrase is incorrect and misleading.

Other outlets like the New York Times covered the story incorrectly but offered corrections after the issue was raised. Anadolu Ajansi is the only media house that correctly covered Karamba Diaby in their article.

The first African-born MP to be elected to Germany’s parliament is none other than Kai-Uwe von Hassel. While Hassel is a white German, he holds the title of the first African-born MP to be elected to Germany’s parliament. As his father, Theodor von Hassel, was a Schutztruppe officer, Hassel was born in Gare, German East Africa, which is today in Lushoto, Tanga Region, Tanzania. This therefore makes him the first person born in Africa to become a German MP.

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Steve Williams
Steve Williams
Steve Williams is an award-winning freelance reporter, with a focus on narrative non-fiction stories about current affairs